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Apr 30th
May 31st
Jun 30th
Jul 31st
The Script Lab
TSL Free Screenplay Contest
A free competition to find the best writers, regardless of financial need. Winners receive exposure to a strong industry jury along with cash prizes.
Currently Closed. Subscribe to receive a notification when the next season opens on April 1st.


The Script Lab and Coverfly are offering this FREE screenplay competition to help open talent-discovery to anyone and everyone, regardless of financial ability. This contest is open to feature, TV and short screenplays. Scripts must be in English and formatted with industry-standard screenwriting software.

First impressions are important: For this free competition, all scripts will receive an initial first impression read, consisting of just the first few pages of each script. Your first few pages are especially important because many readers at studios and agencies make a decision about a script based on the first few pages. Please enter your full screenplay, because the screenplays that advance to subsequent rounds will receive full evaluations from our judges.

2-3 pages of optional feedback from a professional screenplay reader is available for a small fee with your free competition entry. Highly recommended if you want to see how we rate your script based on our many years of experience evaluating screenplays for TSL Notes service.


2020 Winner on Coverfly

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Sep 15th
Oct 4th
Oct 29th


  • Only one submission per writer is allowed. Any other submissions will be disregarded.

  • Submissions are accepted via electronic submission only and must be entered by the final deadline.

  • Optional paid feedback from a professional reader may be requested at the time of entry for a reader analysis fee.

  • Feature screenplays must be a minimum of 70 pages and a maximum of 140 pages.

  • TV pilots must be a minimum of 15 pages and a maximum of 70 pages.

  • Short scripts must be a minimum of 1 page and a maximum of 40 pages.

  • Entries must be received on or before the deadline dates by 11:59 PM Pacific Time.

  • All submitted material must be original, and all rights must be wholly owned by the writer(s).

  • Material must be submitted by the writer. Material written by writing teams must be submitted by one of the writers, with consent of the other(s). All writers must be credited on title page.

  • If a writing team is chosen as a winner, prizes will be given to the person who submitted the project. Each team is responsible for dividing or sharing the prize money.

  • Substitutions of either corrected pages or new drafts of the entered material will be allowed for a limited time with a $5 re-entry fee through Coverfly. Please proofread your script carefully before submitting.

  • It is recommended that original material be registered with the WGA or Copyright Registration with The Library of Congress before submitting to any competition, however, we do not require registration.

  • Your contact info may be included on the cover page of the screenplay, however, it is not required.

  • All ownership and rights to the scripts submitted to this contest remain with the original rights holders.


  • All writers at least 18 years of age are eligible.

  • All persons from anywhere in the world are eligible; however, the material submitted must be in English (occasional dialogue in other languages is acceptable, if subtitle translation is provided).

  • All material submitted to other competitions or contests is eligible for this contest.

  • There are no requirements as to when the material was written.

  • Screenplay and intellectual property must be wholly owned and submitted by the writer(s).

  • Material should be submitted in standard screenplay format, font, spacing and margin.

  • We have no preferences regarding title page content. Title and name of writer would suffice.

  • Entries for this competition are managed on the submission platform Coverfly.

  • Adaptations are ineligible unless the underlying rights are owned by the writer or the work is in the public domain.

  • Feature screenplays longer than 140 pages will not be eligible.

  • All material must be submitted electronically as a PDF or it will not be eligible.

  • The winners will be chosen based on internal criteria for excellent writing including, but not limited to, craft, character, plot, originality, and dialogue. The winners and top finalists may be contacted by interested industry representatives, such as managers, agents or producers. Entrants may be required to submit further information to assist in the judges’ verification of eligibility. Any entrant may be deemed ineligible at the sole discretion of The Script Lab. Finalists may be required to sign and return within seven (7) business days of receipt a notarized Affidavit of Eligibility and a Release and Indemnification and proof of valid passport and any other documents that The Script Lab or any other partner may require before receiving prize payment. Failure to respond to the initial notification within ten (10) days or return of notification will result in disqualification. We reserve the right to amend these rules at any time.